We spent a VERY uncomfortable night on the buoy at Penzance. The wind had us lying broadside on to the swell. Nick slept a bit, I might have dozed off for a few minutes but no more. So there were no objections to getting moving in the morning! We dropped the buoy at 07:30 and headed off towards the Lizard. With a stiff breeze from the north east, we were on a broad reach and made rapid progress. By the time we neared the Lizard, the wind had freshened to 20+kts and we needed to reef. First we rolled the headsail down to it's third reefing point, but still had too much sail up. We hove to and reefed the main. This was the first time I've successfully hove to in Eowyn - the trick was reefing the headsail first, which allowed backed headsail and rudder to balance each other nicely. Even in the steep sharp swell, I was confident in my footing on the deck at the mast to take in two reefs.
Under sail again, our speed had reduced by very little, but the boat was much more conformable and the self steering wasn't working nearly so hard. All that changed when we tacked! The angle to the waves was much less comfortable, and each short wave seemed to stop Eowyn in her tracks. There was little we could do but grin and bear it - motoring into such seas would have been even worse. Once we closed the land however the seas were reduced, and we motor sailed until off the Manacles rocks, where we could again bear away from the wind and sail.
As we approached Falmouth I radioed for a berth. The Port Pendennis Marina was full, but Falmouth Haven had room if we didn't mind rafting outside another boat. We came alongside with no drama - so of course there was no one to watch!
We met up for the evening with my friend and former colleague Jon, now retired to Falmouth. Nice meal out, on the square where the world's press had recently gathered to report the doings of the G7 30miles away in St Ives. Glad we missed that! And so to bed for a much more comfortable night than the one before!
Log of this passage